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Old 01-17-2015, 10:06 PM   #76
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As a side, Nordstroms is extremely happy with their Canadian arrival so far. Entirely different segment of retail for sure, but they were afforded the opportunity to selectively pick and choose markets and locations and grow their brand slowly.
Nordstroms will also need to be careful not to just take their US formula and assume it will work here, Harry Rosen and Holt Renfrew will both put up a fair fight against the US luxury retailer.

Holt went as far as buying out Sportchek's lease at Pacific center and will be expanding into that space to offer similar square footage to the Nordstrom flagship at the other end of the mall.

I went to the Calgary store after they opened, and it is no where near the selection of even their Bellevue store (not even in the same league as their downtown flagship, or michigan avenue store in Chicago). There was a lot of broken collections, and not much in the terms of premier brands, for example the selection of Canali was no where near Harry Rosen's levels.

I hope Nordstrom succeed in Canada as I shop with them in the US quite frequently.
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Old 01-17-2015, 10:08 PM   #77
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Anyone been to locations (other than Metrotown) and know if they have inventory on boardgames? Thanks!
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Old 01-17-2015, 10:31 PM   #78
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Nordstroms will also need to be careful not to just take their US formula and assume it will work here, Harry Rosen and Holt Renfrew will both put up a fair fight against the US luxury retailer.

Holt went as far as buying out Sportchek's lease at Pacific center and will be expanding into that space to offer similar square footage to the Nordstrom flagship at the other end of the mall.

I went to the Calgary store after they opened, and it is no where near the selection of even their Bellevue store (not even in the same league as their downtown flagship, or michigan avenue store in Chicago). There was a lot of broken collections, and not much in the terms of premier brands, for example the selection of Canali was no where near Harry Rosen's levels.

I hope Nordstrom succeed in Canada as I shop with them in the US quite frequently.


the Canadian Pension Plan should bring Neiman Marcus up to Canada to shut Nordstroms out and in turn have Canadians paying into their CPP

As should The Bay bring Saks up, I know they're trying to turn into a Canadian version of Saks by becoming more upscale but they could shut out the competition like how Future Shop and Best Buy have
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Old 01-18-2015, 12:10 AM   #79
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Nordstroms will also need to be careful not to just take their US formula and assume it will work here, Harry Rosen and Holt Renfrew will both put up a fair fight against the US luxury retailer.

Holt went as far as buying out Sportchek's lease at Pacific center and will be expanding into that space to offer similar square footage to the Nordstrom flagship at the other end of the mall.

I went to the Calgary store after they opened, and it is no where near the selection of even their Bellevue store (not even in the same league as their downtown flagship, or michigan avenue store in Chicago). There was a lot of broken collections, and not much in the terms of premier brands, for example the selection of Canali was no where near Harry Rosen's levels.

I hope Nordstrom succeed in Canada as I shop with them in the US quite frequently.
Interesting analysis ... I think Nordstroms ROI risk is minimal versus that of Target. It takes time to ramp up inventory and build vendor relationships and fill your distribution channels regardless of whether you already operate in the US.

Sounds like you are quite the luxury shopper.
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Old 01-18-2015, 12:27 AM   #80
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My take on this on Target and why it's closing, and what Target can do to "salvage" or at least decrease its losses.

A main culprit that made Target close its stores:

Currency depreciation of the CDN $ against the US $.

It's around $1.2 CDN to $1 US.

I'm not sure how they organized the corporate structure of their Canadian stores, but the easiest and most straight-forward structure is where Target CDN sales in CDN dollars would convert into US $ and reported as US $ sales in the USA.

Thus, every time Target sells $1.20 worth of CDN $ goods, it's only $1 US worth of goods back in the US.

Now, it doesn't take a genius to figure out that a 20% drop in the value of your sales would cut your margin by a LOT.

Or, a more simplified version:
Current situation at the exchange rate of $1.20 CDn to $1 USD:
Target sells an item:
1- Cost of goods sold is $0.50 USD
2- Sells it at $1.20 CDN
3- Converted into USD is actually only $1.00 USD of sales
4- Makes $0.50 USD gross profit

Hypothetical situation at the exchange rate of $1.00 CDN to $1 USD (which historically is possible and not long ago, was 1:1):
Target sells an item:
1- COGS is $0.50 USD
2- Sells it at $1.20 CDN
3- Converted into USD is $1.20 USD of sales
4- Makes $0.70 USD gross profit

$0.50 current situation of Gross Profit versus $0.70 profit is a HUGE difference.




--------------------------


What Target can do to get SOMETHING out of closing the stores:

Target had to buy the lease-contracts from Zellers or whatever stores were in the Target locations (before Target opened in those locations).

I think I remember that Target had to pay Zellers $1.8B for 100+ locations.

Source (after I recalled the $1.8B):
Target buys Zellers leases for $1.8B - Business - CBC News

So, Target could sell the lease contracts back to Zellers (Hudson's Bay Co.) or other retailers.

This would significantly reduce the losses attributed to Target's Canadian market.
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Old 01-18-2015, 12:27 AM   #81
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Interesting analysis ... I think Nordstroms ROI risk is minimal versus that of Target. It takes time to ramp up inventory and build vendor relationships and fill your distribution channels regardless of whether you already operate in the US.

Sounds like you are quite the luxury shopper.
the other problem Nordstrom will face is the people aspect, Nordstrom pays on a salary + commission structure, while competitive, it may not be enough to lure experienced retailers from the luxury clothing industry to its stores. The calgary store has already faced quite a bit of turnover at the "assistant department manager level". The Rideau center store also had a hard time finding department managers as they had to extend one of the posting twice before finding the right candidate.

all the general managers will be here from America on a work visa, which means they were unable to find suitable store manager in canada, so they will lack the regional expertise that a local store manager can bring to the table.

like I said, I really do wish for Nordstroms success, but all I know is that Canadian retailer wont just back off without a fight, Larry Rosen is a very smart business man, and he will do what ever he can to make Nordstroms time in Canada as tough as possible.

The one advantage nordstrom has over Harry Rosen and Holt is that nordstrom is more accessible for average joes like myself, it is not all high end brands, they have collections that appeal to a wide range of customers, this will bridge the gap between where the Bay is now, and where Holt and Rosen is.
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Old 01-18-2015, 12:52 AM   #82
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I understand the logic behind your Canadian dollar argument but it's unlikely that the value of the Canadian dollar greatly exacerbated the tenuous financial situation - positive margin and positive SG&A results in positive operating profit regardless of currency valuation (see Costco, Wal-Mart, etc.).

Had Target Canada been buying product in USD from US suppliers and collecting revenue in Canadian Dollars at the POS in Canadian stores it would have been a totally different scenario. However - Target was buying from Canadian suppliers with Canadian dollars generated via the Canadian operation. In fact, that the Canadian dollar was declining in value relative to the US currency actually mitigated the financial impact of the Canadian operation to Target as a whole. It's actually widely suspected that Target struck to shutter it's Canadian operations and write-off the entire exercise in FY15 knowing that the currency could rebound in FY16 or FY17 and the costs associated with the process could become greatly exaggerated at that point.

1) a declining Canadian dollar also positively impacts your SG&A when the US parent corp has to function as a guarantor to your debt
2) Target Canada bought from Canadian suppliers (such as Sobeys) with Canadian dollars. They collected revenue in Canadian dollars. Thus, cost of goods were fixed to the value of the currency.

Had Target been buying from US suppliers (aside from internally-sourced brands) it would have been a significant issue.
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Old 01-18-2015, 12:57 AM   #83
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I understand the logic behind your Canadian dollar argument but it's unlikely that the value of the Canadian dollar greatly exacerbated the tenuous financial situation - positive margin and positive SG&A results in positive operating profit regardless of currency valuation (see Costco, Wal-Mart, etc.).

Had Target Canada been buying product in USD from US suppliers and collecting revenue in Canadian Dollars at the POS in Canadian stores it would have been a totally different scenario. However - Target was buying from Canadian suppliers with Canadian dollars generated via the Canadian operation. In fact, that the Canadian dollar was declining in value relative to the US currency actually mitigated the financial impact of the Canadian operation to Target as a whole. It's actually widely suspected that Target struck to shutter it's Canadian operations and write-off the entire exercise in FY15 knowing that the currency could rebound in FY16 or FY17 and the costs associated with the process could become greatly exaggerated at that point.

1) a declining Canadian dollar also positively impacts your SG&A when the US parent corp has to function as a guarantor to your debt
2) Target Canada bought from Canadian suppliers (such as Sobeys) with Canadian dollars. They collected revenue in Canadian dollars. Thus, cost of goods were fixed to the value of the currency.

Had Target been buying from US suppliers (aside from internally-sourced brands) it would have been a significant issue.
Good points on cutting losses now and reporting a smaller loss, than doing it later when the CDN $ appreciates.

In regards to the SG&A and CDN suppliers:
However, SG&A is not as high a cost as the COGs.

It's fixed (to a certain extent) as opposed to the COGs.

I wouldn't be surprised that, because of the depreciation, that Target might have lost money on each sale they made once the CDN $ was at 1.2 to 1.

The question now is how much COGs/product was from US suppliers and how much was from CDN suppliers.

I think it is leaning heavily on US suppliers, thus my argument on the CDN depreciating.

It helps CDN companies exporting.

It hurts US companies exporting to Canada (Target).
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Old 01-18-2015, 02:30 AM   #84
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It hurts US companies exporting to Canada (Target).
While the declining CDN dollar may bring up the cost of goods from the US, I wouldn't say it would hurt them as in the end, the cost of the goods is then transferred to the end consumer.
The exchange rate affects all companies pretty much equally. If the exchange rate is 1.2 for Target, it's pretty much 1.2 or very close to it for Walmart and Costco.

What hurt Target the most was their lack of proper distribution channels. You can't turn a profit if you have nothing to sell at the store level and it really sucks when they have an item on ad and no inventory in stock.

What works for BB and FS is that they have their own DC in Burnaby and a competent buying staff to keep the warehouse full and thus in turn able to supply the stores with items to sell, especially if the item is on sale.

My wife, when she was in Univeristy, worked at a retail clothing store and one of her biggest complaints was how the buyer supplied the stores with the wrong sized items. At the location where she worked, most of the female customers were S and XS but they would only get one or two of each items in those sizes. What they had in abundance were L and XL's which would constantly end up in the clearance section of her store.

If Target was to succeed in Canada, they needed to team up some big store that had their own DC's throughout Canada like how Zellars was able to pull from HBC's DC.
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Old 01-18-2015, 02:33 AM   #85
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So I went to Target at Lansdowne today to get some nacho chips that only they sell... It was fucking packed to the gills!!! Every single cashier had like a 10 person lineup and could barely move in there. I guess everyone is fishing for deals already???

People are such stupid assholes
: It's hilarious since all the deals could've been had before they announced their exit
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Old 01-18-2015, 02:46 AM   #86
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However ... inventory replenishment was ASTONISHINGLY bad with no visible improvement until even now.
<snip>
Analysts are correct - the amount of overlap in this segment of retail is much greater in Canada than it is in the US but Target's challenges were entirely of their own making. I still believe confidently that they could have been successful here in the long-term but the financial hole they dug for themselves was simply too deep.
Competition is too fierce for the lack of population in Canada, and i think this may have been one of the things they missed when they originally set up their plan to enter the Canadian market.

As a country, we have roughly the same population as California (35M give or take 1-2M) yet we have much more land in between each cities. So what worked in the US isn't quite going to work in Canada.

If Target was to succeed in Canada, they need to pick and choose which regions that needed to be in and work out a proper DC channel and hire competent staff to keep the stores stocked full of the items that they have to have during different times of the year.

This type of data mining is very important and Walmart USA spends a lot of money every year on data analysis to help them make better buying/stocking decisions.
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Old 01-18-2015, 03:26 AM   #87
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While the declining CDN dollar may bring up the cost of goods from the US, I wouldn't say it would hurt them as in the end, the cost of the goods is then transferred to the end consumer.
The exchange rate affects all companies pretty much equally. If the exchange rate is 1.2 for Target, it's pretty much 1.2 or very close to it for Walmart and Costco.

What hurt Target the most was their lack of proper distribution channels. You can't turn a profit if you have nothing to sell at the store level and it really sucks when they have an item on ad and no inventory in stock.

What works for BB and FS is that they have their own DC in Burnaby and a competent buying staff to keep the warehouse full and thus in turn able to supply the stores with items to sell, especially if the item is on sale.

My wife, when she was in Univeristy, worked at a retail clothing store and one of her biggest complaints was how the buyer supplied the stores with the wrong sized items. At the location where she worked, most of the female customers were S and XS but they would only get one or two of each items in those sizes. What they had in abundance were L and XL's which would constantly end up in the clearance section of her store.

If Target was to succeed in Canada, they needed to team up some big store that had their own DC's throughout Canada like how Zellars was able to pull from HBC's DC.
Good points.

The currency devaluation is not the only reason, obviously.

It was just the last straw that made Target withdraw.

Coupled with the problems you described (warehousing and distribution), they couldn't also manage the currency devaluation as well as other more established US companies.

It's the last blow, so to speak.

It's like the Russian Ruble inflation problem whereby some car manufacturers had to stop selling cars to their Russian dealerships because of the devaluation of the Russian Ruble (minus 40%).

So, Jaguar, Land Rover, GM, and Audi stopped selling cars to their Russian dealerships temporarily.

But, other car companies are continuing to sell to their Russian dealerships.

Car manufacturers (the foreign company, like Target) selling to Russian dealerships (Canadian customers) and said dealerships paying in Rubles (which are 40% less in value currently).

Similar analogy with Target stopping sales (closing stores) and other US companies continuing sales (Walmart, Costco, etc. as you stated).

Target, coupled with other problems, couldn't take the currency slide as well as other US companies doing business in Canada.

Source:
Ruble drop; Audi, Jaguar Land Rover, GM stop selling cars in Russia | PerformanceDrive

If the currency problem didn't manifest itself, Target might still be continuing operations for a few years more.

So, currency devaluation, is one of the reasons for Target withdrawing, to an extent.

But, like you said, other problems were prime reasons for Target leaving.

Last edited by Marshall Placid; 01-18-2015 at 03:37 AM.
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Old 01-18-2015, 08:19 AM   #88
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They also over spent by opening 135 stores at once.. how is any company going to recoup from that...
They were too greedy and wanted to over take Walmart, Loblaw, etc...


on a side note, time to pick up some nice dyson vacuum and fans
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Old 01-18-2015, 08:55 AM   #89
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Dyson fans? Now who's overspending
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Old 01-18-2015, 10:24 AM   #90
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Folks keep making comments about how Target was too aggressive initially (opening 133 locations in less than three years); financially, they had no other choice. When they assumed the 200+ leases from HBC they were forced to either turn them into productive real estate immediately (open stores) or spin those leases off to other retailers. They retained the 133 that they felt were strategic and optimal with regards to the footprint that they wanted to achieve in this country. As they were now paying 133 leases, the only choice they had was to open locations in those instances immediately, whether their supply network, replenishment channels and DCs were prepared. They couldn't afford to let unproductive real estate operate as a drag on the entire operation.

SumAznGuy : you are completely correct with respect to Canadian geography and demographics playing a very different role with respect big-box retail operation in Canada vs the US. On a nation scale, the US is massively more dense (10x the population); as a result, scales of economy positively impact operators such as Target. It costs a considerable amount of money to truck long-haul to many "outposts" and even more remote cities within Canada. Not to mention that vendors consistently charge more for like product here than they do in the US (they budget for currency fluctuation and build-in higher pricing to account for different regularly or legislative warrant aspects). All of these costs are naturally passed to the consumer. It's one of the reasons that I become so utterly irate when people (and the government) challenge the price of consumer goods here versus the US. In fact, we should all MARVEL that prices here are as close to those in the US as they currently are.
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Old 01-18-2015, 09:22 PM   #91
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Another problem is the brand awareness and competitive advantage(s) (or lack thereof) for Target here in Canada.

Target is termed as "cheap chic" in the USA, and the marketing campaign/strategy took years to manifest itself and to make consumers become aware of Target's positioning.

Target's move into Canada didn't take into account the time required to build its brand here in Canada.

They moved into Canada in 2011/12 and it takes longer than 2 to 3 years to really push into the consumers' minds of Target's market positioning and brand message.

They expanded too quickly without a true competitive advantage or any differentiation strategy at all.

For all intents and purposes, in the mind of consumers, Target might very well have looked like another Zellers from 2011 to 2015.
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Old 01-19-2015, 12:41 AM   #92
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oh man, after reading different forums and threads, talking about Target closure, I realized everyone in Canada is retail, marketing, economy and business experts.

Too bad target didnt' just let one these random forum poster to run their Canadian stores.. surely with this much knowledge on how retail stores should run in Canada, Target would've made billions, not down billions.







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Old 01-19-2015, 01:14 AM   #93
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Competition is too fierce for the lack of population in Canada, and i think this may have been one of the things they missed when they originally set up their plan to enter the Canadian market.

As a country, we have roughly the same population as California (35M give or take 1-2M) yet we have much more land in between each cities. So what worked in the US isn't quite going to work in Canada.

If Target was to succeed in Canada, they need to pick and choose which regions that needed to be in and work out a proper DC channel and hire competent staff to keep the stores stocked full of the items that they have to have during different times of the year.

This type of data mining is very important and Walmart USA spends a lot of money every year on data analysis to help them make better buying/stocking decisions.
This is why Walmart is so successful and basically destroys every major competitor wherever they go. Correct me if I am wrong, but Walmart houses the world's largest data warehouse, just for data mining, data analysis, inventory management etc. It's pretty insane considering that they aren't an IT firm, but a supermarket chain.
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Old 01-19-2015, 01:43 AM   #94
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My wife, when she was in Univeristy, worked at a retail clothing store and one of her biggest complaints was how the buyer supplied the stores with the wrong sized items. At the location where she worked, most of the female customers were S and XS but they would only get one or two of each items in those sizes. What they had in abundance were L and XL's which would constantly end up in the clearance section of her store.
My wife has the same problem, not enough clothing in Small sizes and too many L or XL - its great if your a whale, you can great discounts. Stores in Vancouver need to know their demographics.
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Old 01-19-2015, 02:17 AM   #95
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just went to Target to see if anything is on sale...nothing was that cheap, whatta waste of time
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Old 01-19-2015, 07:30 AM   #96
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give it a week or two before the entire store goes on clearance.

Then buy out the store, replace it with a T and T supermarket.

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Old 01-19-2015, 07:59 AM   #97
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the news story i watched on tv said that target might just ship their unsold inventory back across the border depending on how great the losses are compared to just having a fire sale here.
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Old 01-19-2015, 09:57 AM   #98
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This is why Walmart is so successful and basically destroys every major competitor wherever they go. Correct me if I am wrong, but Walmart houses the world's largest data warehouse, just for data mining, data analysis, inventory management etc. It's pretty insane considering that they aren't an IT firm, but a supermarket chain.
Besides the US Army, Walmart has the largest computer truck tracking system in the US. Being GPS based, at any given time they can tell where each truck is and when it will be delivering to the stores.
I've heard, Walmart's data analysis has gotten to the point that when it is hurricane season, they have lots of beer and instant noodles in their DC's and when the forecast calls for severe weather, they auto ship those items.

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the news story i watched on tv said that target might just ship their unsold inventory back across the border depending on how great the losses are compared to just having a fire sale here.
Assuming the closest Target DC in the US is in Washington, it may only cost them $1-3 a box to truck it back down to their DC. But the cheapo's here in town wants it for $50% off which would make it much more cost effective to ship back the pricier items.
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Old 01-19-2015, 11:55 AM   #99
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Originally Posted by skiiipi View Post

The one advantage nordstrom has over Harry Rosen and Holt is that nordstrom is more accessible for average joes like myself, it is not all high end brands, they have collections that appeal to a wide range of customers, this will bridge the gap between where the Bay is now, and where Holt and Rosen is.
I feel like Rosen and Holt now cater to the ultra-rich as opposed to the middle to upper income groups. I don't know what it's like at other locations, but I seldom get a sniff of service when I walk into Rosen or Holt (and I usually walk in there wearing business attire!) I guess I'm not mainland Chinese. I also feel that Holt and Rosen focus too much on brand-names as opposed to quality items. Why can I get a better Samuelson suit at the Bay than at Rosen for a third of the price?

The one thing that always impresses me about Nordstrom is the service. Americans are good at providing service, but Canadian retail workers are generally pretty blase. Maybe it's just a Vancouver thing, but I hope Nordstrom can find workers who are willing to go the extra mile when it comes to Vancouver.
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Old 01-19-2015, 11:58 AM   #100
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Originally Posted by thumper View Post
the news story i watched on tv said that target might just ship their unsold inventory back across the border depending on how great the losses are compared to just having a fire sale here.
are there any updates on this?
or did the sales start? I haven't been by target since this was announced.

they probably wont be able to sell everything so I'm hoping they'll just ship back what doesn't sell on clearance.
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